Hope in Nicaragua: Community Members Provide Hope to Young Nicaraguan Woman

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Investors and friends from neighboring Rocky Point development working to raise money for life saving surgery.

Amongst the picturesque beach front of rural northern Nicaragua lies the home of Circle of Empowerment. An organization founded and run by Margaret Boren, that is dedicated to advocating for the health and well being of the local population. Margaret Boren has dedicated her time over the past 7 years in creating a health clinic and helping the local community with complicated medical conditions.

One such case is the emotional story of Virginia. Virginia has been suffering from chronic headaches, seizures and various other medical complications due to hydrocephalus, or swelling in her cranium, since she was 14 years old. Richard and Jim Byrne, Barry Oliver and Brett DeGreen had the pleasure of visiting Margaret at her beautiful clinic and home to discuss the challenges she has had getting some patients the help that they need.

As they sat in the open-air rancho (a traditional conical structure built with Teak logs and Royal Palm fronds with open sides), Virginia and her mother Luisa joined the group. Immediately, the physical pain and suffering was apparent on Virginia’s face. Behind her blank expression, the constant physical anguish is easily apparent. Her mother described the numerous three-hour trips to the hospital in Managua only to have the doctors turn them away until the following week. Initially thought to be the result of a parasite, surgery was ruled out by the local surgeons.

While the Nicaraguan government covers medical expenses for its citizens, some of the tests needed to determine the cause of Virginia’s condition are not covered. Luisa has spent several months of wages on MRI’s and various other tests, only to be told that the results are inconclusive, or not yet ready. Lusia clutched a bag full of Virginia’s CAT scans and medical records with the hope that she held in her hand the cure to her daughter’s illness that she has endured for almost 5 years. As Luisa spoke in Spanish, only a few words were familiar, but a small crack in her voice, as she chronicled all the disappointing trips to the hospital, was the only indication of the tears that she has been holding back for so many years. Despite the language barrier, everyone present had a strong emotional response as this caring mother described her frustration and hopes to save her child. As the guests listened, all of Lusia’s frustrations became their own, and likewise, they felt powerless to help.

The purpose of the meeting was to see how a group of people could help this young women get the help she needs. In an area where the average annual income is between $1500-$2000, the simple act of getting to the hospital is cost that must be budgeted. While possessions and “wealth” are not plenty, after only a few moments it was evident that family is a possession that the Nicaraguan people value far above anything else. That ideal is quite infectious, and in Nicaragua they are very eager to welcome anyone to their family. Although none of the group could give the medical advice to save this girl, it was apparent that at a minimum, they could help cover the cost of the numerous trips into Managua.

With the help of Barry Oliver of Century 21 Gold Coast Realty and Rocky Point Nicaragua, Richard and Jim Byrne and the Bryne Family Foundation, a fund has been created to help cover the cost of the numerous trips into Managua and other future medical expenses. Century 21 Gold Coast Realty has also helped numerous other patients in need and has been committed to helping the local community. To date, Century 21 Gold Coast Realty has helped to provide funds to cover the book and uniform fees for local high schools, so that over forty high school students would have the opportunity to continue their education. They have also helped more than ten students pay for University, as well has help fund local grade school and kindergarten students. In addition, local baseball, soccer, basketball and chess teams have been helped through the efforts of the team at Century 21 Gold Coast Realty.

As Luisa and Virginia prepared for another trip to Managua, they now know that there are four more family members whose thoughts are with them, and the cost of the trip is one less hurdle for them to overcome. Come to find out, Virginia was preparing to celebrate her 19th birthday the following day, and our thoughts and hopes are with her and her mother that by her next birthday she will be on the road to a full recovery.

Virginia still has a long road ahead. To help Virginia, or donate to Margaret’s efforts please donate via Century 21 Nicaragua through Barry Oliver. Donations can be made via Skype at the following address: http://www.c21nicabeachfront.com/pages/donate.html.


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